Shipping containers as housing
An idea whose time is now: container housing. (It’s actually been around for awhile; ask Michael Geller.)
Approximately 30 million steel shipping containers are in existence, filled and floating, or standing about empty in a port. Eight feet wide by 8.5 feet high, and either 20 or 40 feet long, the steel shipping container has been the globally standardized transportation module since 1956.
Costs of shipping empty containers back to their origin are high, so oft times the containers sit unused in ports. If one lives near a port with abundant containers, then the energy required to transport the steel container to a local building site will be lower than an inland location, far from the port.
But buyer beware, as that used container might have been sprayed with insecticides or fungicides inside, and coated with lead or heavy metal paints on the outside.
Two shipping containers surround a taller common space. The containers house sleeping and work areas while the center space hosts dining, living and a loft above. The Studio H:T project in Nederland, Colorado is off-the-grid
Crossbox House, by CG Architectes Pont-Péan, France, 2009
London Container City, by Urban Space Management, London, UK from 2001.
A wooden sided container sits atop an existing stone foundation in Portugal.
The NRW-Forum Düsseldorf invited renowned architects, designers, and artists from around the world to submit existing and new designs for container architecture.